Excuses range from believable to bizarre at school

By Violetta Blagonya Smith-Cotton High School

January 7, 2014

High school is filled with stressing over exams, hurrying to turn in assignments, and wanting to leave class, which can lead to many different excuses to pop up in classrooms.

“My dog ate my homework,” “I left it in my locker,” and “I need to use the restroom,” are just some of the most common ones out there, and they aren’t always used for a missing homework assignment. In fact, MaShayla Hern, a sophomore and straight-A student at Smith-Cotton High School, shared some of her get-out-of-class excuses.

“A friend and I tried to leave class to get service on her cellphone,” she said, laughing. “My friend was texting a guy she liked, so to convince the teacher to let us leave class, we told him that her camera was locked in my locker, and we both had to leave so I could dial the combination and open the lock. It was the best excuse I could think of at the time.”

Hern recalled that she had heard some crazy excuses in the past, including a boy telling a teacher they had to use the restroom because he had “girly problems.” She also wondered why anyone told their teacher their dog ate their homework, when that is the most common excuse used and most likely isn’t true. “You got to try and make it believable, at least,” she said.

Ramey Baro is also a student at Smith-Cotton, and additionally shared a few bizarre alibis. He admitted he once gave a teacher the excuse, “My mom got hit by a truck, so I couldn’t do it.” Baro said he can think of crazy excuses on the spot, and one of his most brilliant ones would have to be, “Aliens took it as a sample of human handwriting.” He said that sometimes excuses don’t have to be believable, they just have to be funny. “If a teacher laughs at the excuse, then he or she is already in a better mood and might let you turn it in tomorrow,” Baro said.

Although students are thought to be the ones who use excuses most often, they are not the only ones. Teachers are additionally guilty of not finishing something on time, like grading tests for example, and some excuses come in handy. Hern revealed that one time a teacher of hers told the class the tests she graded were left in her car.

“I saw the tests on a pile on her desk, so of course I knew my teacher was just giving us an excuse for not grading the tests,” Hern said. “It wasn’t a big deal, but I just found it funny how students aren’t the only ones who have to find a way out of not finishing something. Everyone does it.”

Beth Ackerman is a teacher for grades 10, 11 and 12 at Smith-Cotton. She teaches sophomore-level American History, and Psychology for all grades. Ackerman was a quiet and average student when she was in school. She was involved in vocal music, and recalled that she once told her choir director, “I couldn’t have been involved with teepeeing his place because I was grounded. Maybe that was a lie.” She recalled that one of the most bizarre excuses a student has given her was that they were absent because they received a new phone, which resulted in new games.

Ackerman said she can tell when a student’s excuse isn’t true because, “Their story changes before they are finished or the office is calling me already.” In addition to that, she said the most common excuse students give her is when they text in class. Their reason is that their parents are texting them.

Ackerman isn’t innocent when it comes to giving excuses. She admitted that one time, when she didn’t grade a test or homework, she told her students, “Everything was in my car, locked, and I couldn’t find the keys!”

High school is full of bizarre excuses, strange alibis, and sometimes even believable explanations. They do come in handy in many situations, and there are thousands of them out there. It is up to the individual to decide which ones to use, and when to use them. Some excuses could backfire and get a person into even worse trouble than if they just told the truth, and others could actually save them in a particular situation.